Report on the Calgary LinuxFest: A really great experience!

I woke up late on May 6 (around 6:00 am). My wife and I got ready, woke up our 3-year old son and left Edmonton around 7:00 a.m. By 10:20 we arrived at the University of Calgary. By 10:40 we had registered and went in to watch Aaron Seigo’s talk about KDE4 Development. We got in time to little bit on the use of Subversion to manage software projects. The talk was really interesting and the audience was engaged. Aaron really knows his stuff.

After Aaron’s talk, I met a Venezuelan working in Calgary doing some Postgres development. We talked a little bit about our lives in Canada and we stayed for Mike Hillyer‘s talk on MySql normalization. The talk was well attended and Mike did a very good job explaining the importance of normalizing databases.

At noon we had the lunch break. I used the time to talk with some of the organizers and to learnt about their experience. I also had the chance to meet Aaron. He is a really cool guy. I mentioned about the World Forum on Free Knowledge I am helping to organize and he mentioned he was interested. If everything goes well, we might send him an invitation (I have to get the SOLVE‘s approval first and it has proved to be always a lengthy process).

After lunch, I attended Marcel Gagne‘s presentation. He is definitely one of the best speakers I have listened to in regards to Linux. Marcel gave lots of useful tips to make your Linux experience a real Multimedia experience.

Marcel’s talk was followed by Jon Watson’s talk on Podcasting. Jon definitely knows how to explain his stuff. Unfortunately, I could not stay for the whole talk because Mark, a representative of the University of Calgary, wanted to introduce me before my talk so we had a little chat during Jon’s talk.

After Jon, it was my chance to talk. Mark did a very nice introduction and then I started talking 😉 I posted the presentation on my webpage. I started the talk with the tale on how the Venezuelan Linux distribution is promising to help the Wayuu indigenous people in Venezuela to preserve their cultural heritage. I moved, then, to talk about some of the many Free and Open Source Software in Latin American. Later, I focused on Free and Open Source Software in Venezuela and the Education Project that I am coordinating. I ended the talk with the tale on how Free and Open Source Software is helping remote communities in Venezuela. I opened the floor for questions and comments. The were many interesting questions, a couple of persons were asking about the costs of all these Venezuelan projects. I had to mention that money was not the main issue in there. The main issue was Achieving Technological Independence. We had to cut short the questions and answers period because the next talk was coming. It was great to know that people were really interested in knowing more about what we are doing in Venezuela.

After my talk, I attended Aaron talk on How Society Improves Society. It was a really nice talk that kept me motivated to continue working on the Free and Open Source Software projects we are initiating in Venezuela. By the way, I found a related talk by Aaron in Google Video

The LinuxFest was a really terrific experience. I am looking forward to next year’s event.


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